Travel Advances

Travel advances are to be used for planned program expenses that must be paid out-of-pocket by the faculty member. The Office of Global Strategies will be able to tell you the amount of the travel advance you are eligible for. The travel advance agreement should be submitted a month in advance, along with a domestic vendor application form, if the traveler has not completed one before. It is recommended that the traveler select ACH as the method of payment so that funds may be distributed into the traveler's account regardless of his or her location. Any unused funds must be returned to the University within three weeks of completion of the program.

Per Diem

The Office of Global Strategies uses a formula based off the Department of State's foreign per diem rates to calculate a per diem for each traveler. Reductions may then be made to take into account travel days and meals already included in the program. The exact rate will be communicated to each traveler during the budgeting phase prior to travel. The per diem may only be used for food and incidentals. All other pre-approved expenses require receipts for reimbursement.


Itemized receipts must be submitted for reimbursement of all pre-approved expenses not included in the per diem. In locations where receipts are not readily available, travelers may bring a small notebook for the creation of handwritten receipts. These should contain the name of the vendor, a description of the items purchased, the cost, and a signature from the vendor's representative (waiter, sales clerk, etc). If the transaction is over $25, a missing receipt form must also be submitted.

Non-Reimbursable Expenses

Only budgeted expenses are reimbursable. Travelers are advised to work with OGS to ensure that all foreseeable expenses are included in the budget. If necessary but unexpected expenses arise, the traveler should contact OGS to determine whether reimbursement can be made.

Travel Expense Reports

Travel expense reports are required for any travel who has taken a travel advance or who is requesting reimbursement for expenses. The form can be found online on the Catholic University Finance Division's website, along with general instructions. Remember to attach a printout of the currency conversion rate (use a reputable online reference site) along with your receipts. The receipts should be neatly taped to 8.5x11" paper for scanning. The completed travel expense report must be submitted to OGS within 10 business days of the completion of your trip. This will allow adequate time for OGS to review and approve your travel expense report prior to submitting it to Accounts Payable. Extensions may be approved if needed, but should be requested and explained in advance.

Relevant University Policies

This guide is intended as a convenient summary of important information. However, it does not negate the traveler's responsibility to read and be familiar with relevant University policies, including the Travel Policy and International Travel Policy.